Power Ranking the Pac-12's Best Performances from Week 4

Bill N@@Bill_N1Correspondent ISeptember 26, 2011

Power Ranking the Pac-12's Best Performances from Week 4

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    Three teams had did not play this week, but there were some interesting games. The Pac-12 conference is still ranked fourth, as indicated in the ESPN conference power ranking.

    There are three top 25 Pac-12 teams again after the Week 5 AP rankings: Stanford (3-0) No. 6*, Oregon (3-1) No. 9* and Arizona State No. 25*. USC fell out of the top 25 with the loss to ASU.

    Player of the week honors go to Oregon RB LaMichael James for offense, Arizona State LB Shelly Lyons for defense and Oregon State returner Jordan Poyer for special teams.

    Pac-12 quarterbacks are still the best of any conference. Eight conference QBs rank among the top 40 in the nation in passing efficiency.

    Top games this week include: Washington Huskies at Utah Utes, Colorado Buffaloes at Washington State Cougars and Arizona Wildcats at USC Trojans.

    Here is a ranking of the conference’s best performances from the fourth week of the college football season, excluding Stanford Cardinal, Utah and Washington State, who did not play.

    *Week 5 AP ranking

    Previous Pac-12 Power Rankings:

    Week 3

    Week 2

    Week 1

9. Oregon State Beavers

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    Score: UCLA 27, Oregon State 19

    Details under the UCLA slide. Things are not looking good for the Beavers to get out of the North division cellar.

    Oregon State visits Arizona State and may chalk up another loss.

8. Colorado Buffaloes

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    Score: Ohio State 37, Colorado 17

    Ohio State (3-1) pounded mistake-laden Colorado (1-3) as expected, as Braxton Miller throws two TDs to Devin Smith in first start.

    Miller was 5-of-13 for 83 yards and no INTs, but the Buckeyes rushed for 238 yards to 76 for the Buffs. Junior RB Jordan Hall had 84 yards and one TD on 18 carries, and Miller added 83 yards on 17 carries.

    Colorado's road losing streak is now at 20 games.

    Converting 3-of-13 third downs, nine penalties, two fumbles and a 90-yard kickoff return by Hall didn't help the Buffaloes. However, they were also dominated on both sides of the line of scrimmage.

    Senior QB Tyler Hansen was 22-of-39 for 239 yards, two TDs and no INTs. He spread the ball to eight receivers.

    Colorado hosts Washington State this week and hopes to get its first Pac-12 win as do the Cougars.

7. USC Trojans

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    Score: Arizona State 43, USC 22

    Details under the ASU slide. Suffice to say, mistake-prone USC turned the game over to the Sun Devlis, and even so, were in it until about five minutes to go.

    USC hosts Arizona this week and hopes to get back on track if they can limit Nick Foles and stop making so many mistakes.

6. UCLA Bruins

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    Score: UCLA 27, Oregon State 19

    This was a must win game for both teams to salvage any chance for a decent season, and UCLA beat Oregon State behind QB Richard Brehaut’s single passing and running TDs.

    Brehaut was 7-of-11 for 146 yards and no INTs. Senior RB Derrick Coleman rushed for 100 yards on 20 carries. UCLA outrushed the Beavers 211 yards to 88.

    Redshirt freshman QB Sean Mannion debuted as a starter for the Beavers, who fell to 0-3 for the first time since 1996. He was 24-of-40 for 287 yards, one TD and one INT. WR James Rogers returned for the first time since being injured last season and caught five passes for 76 yards.

    The Beavers closed the gap to 21-19 to start the fourth quarter after missing a two-point conversion. They trailed 21-3 near the end of the second quarter, but an 85-yard punt return score by Jordan Poyer with 13 seconds in the half and a FG and TD in the third quarter got them back into the game.

    UCLA scored the only points in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard TD run by 6’4” 237-pound sophomore RB Anthony Barr on the only carry of the day.

    UCLA faces a tough task on Saturday at Stanford. 

5. Arizona Wildcats

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    Score: Oregon 56, Arizona 31

    Details under the Oregon slide. Nick Foles had a good game, but that was about it for the Wildcats, as Oregon ran all over them.

    Arizona travels to USC, who has something to prove.

4. California Golden Bears

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    Score: Washington 31, California 23

    Details under the Washington slide. Cal had a chance to tie it near the end of the game with the ball on their two yard line, but turned the ball over after no gain in four tries.

    Cal has a bye this week and then travels to Oregon and hope to put up a fight.

3. Washington Huskies

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    Score: Washington 31, California 23

    Washington (3-1) was outgained 409 to 457 yards by California (3-1) and had two turnovers to none with less time of possession and still beat Cal.

    Huskies QB Keith Price, playing on two sprained knees, threw for 292 yards, two TDs and no INTs on 19 of 25 passing. RB Chris Polk added rushing and receiving TDs and gained 60 yards on 20 carries, and 85 yards on four catches.

    California QB Zach Maynard was 23-of-43 for 349 yards, one TD and no INT. The leading receiver of the game was sophomore WR Keenan Allen, with 10 catches for 197 yards and one TD.

    The Bears pulled ahead 23-21 in the third quarter, but the Huskies scored the last 10 points to win the game.

    Cal had a first and goal on the Huskies two yard line near the end of the game, trailing 31-23. They needed a touchdown and a two-point play to force overtime.

    But the Huskies defense was stout, and two incompletions and two runs netted zero yards, so Cal turned the ball over on downs.

    Washington sophomore defensive end Hau'oli Jamora will miss the rest of the 2011 season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee, the school announced Monday. This is a big loss because he was the team’s best pass rusher.

    Washington travels for a tough game at Utah.

2. Arizona State Sun Devils

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    Score: Arizona State 43, USC 22

    Arizona State (3-1) ended its 11-game losing streak to USC (3-1) as the Trojans self destructed with four turnovers and missed red zone opportunities, penalties and only 1-of-9 third down conversions.

    The more experienced (29 seniors) Sun Devils played a turnover free game, limited their penalties and took advantage turnovers to score most of their points.

    USC outgained ASU 402 to 392 total yards with a 35:31 to 24:29 time of possession advantage.

    Just when it seemed like the Trojans would get back in the game in the first half, they self-destructed. Trailing 14-6, USC had the ball on the ASU 12, and Matt Barkley threw an interception to ASU LB Vontaze Burfict, who was playing out of position. His long return set ASU up for another TD for a 21-6 lead.

    Just when the Trojans got back in the game and took a 22-21 lead in the third quarter and had the momentum, they self destructed.  A pass interference helped ASU score another TD to take a 28-22 lead. Then Marc Tyler fumbled at the ASU 25 after several good runs.

    USC was driving for a go-ahead score early in the fourth quarter, and Barkley fumbled at the ASU 18. A questionable personal foul call on T.J. McDonald (his third of the night) helped ASU go ahead 36-22. Then, Barkley threw a pick-six interception as he was being tackled to make the final score 43-22.

    ASU QB Brock was 25-of-32 for 223 yards and two TDs. The biggest surprise for ASU was RB Cameron Marshall, who was doubtful with a sprained ankle and ran for 141 yards on 25 carries and three TDs. He surprised the Trojans with a 70-yard TD run on the fourth play by ASU, scoring on a missed tackle by Jawanza Starling.

    USC QB Matt Barkley had one of his worst games in three seasons, with two pass interceptions and a fumble on 21-of-33 passing for 227 yards. He missed some open receivers on critical plays that would have changed the momentum of the game and then gave the ball away on those turnovers.

    Trojan WR Robert Woods had another terrific game with eight catches for 131 yards and a 47-yard kickoff return. Freshman kicker Andre Heidari was 3-for-3 on field goals.

    ASU played a good game on both sides of the ball, and that was good enough to beat the mistake prone Trojans.

    The Sun Devils replaced the Trojans in the AP top 25 in Week 5, moving up to No.25. This is a focused and unified Arizona State team who has overcome injuries, a tough road loss and has 29 seniors.

    ASU hosts Oregon State in an easy game.

1. Oregon Ducks

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    Score: Oregon 56, Arizona 31

    Oregon (3-1) RB LaMichael James rushed for a school record 288 yards on 23 carries with two touchdowns in the Ducks 56-31 win at Arizona (1-3). James also had a 51-yard punt return and is likely back in the Heisman hunt.

    Oregon had 415 yards rushing and 516 total yards. QB Darron Thomas passed for two TDs and ran for two more on 11 of 20 for 101 yards.

    Arizona did manage to close to 35-24 in the third quarter, but Oregon pulled away. QB Nick Foles passed for 398 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions on 34-of-57 passes and could have done better without some dropped passes.

    Arizona had only 82 yards rushing, including 42 yards that Foles lost, and totaled 480 yards against the Ducks. Nine penalties and 6-of-19 third down conversions didn’t help their cause.

    Leading receivers were senior WR David Douglas (7-for-120 yards) and senior WR Juron Criner (9 for 96 yards). Sophomore WR Richard Morrison had one receiving TD, and senior WR David Roberts added two more.

    The Ducks head into a bye week feeling pretty good. They play host to California next.